Jan Norris: Food and Florida

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Chocolate, Nuts, Bourbon, Pie Crust – Call it Delicious, But Don’t Call It Derby Pie

May 1st, 2010 · 6 Comments

Some folks are just rabid if you borrow their trademarked name. Frisbee® is one of them – their lawyers are amazingly sharp at catching every printed or whispered mention of the non-generic flying toy disc and fire off a letter to let you know “You need to type that symbol after its name or they’ll own your rear end. Now you be sweet and have a good day.”

May Pie

Same with the  folks. Stalwart group, this: Use the name Derby Pie® , if you’re not referring to the one at Melrose Inn in Prospect, Ky., in the middle of horses, big hats, and blue grass, and you’re in violation of trademark usage laws. They send their hound dogs after you for it, too. (Click here, if you don’t believe me.) The Pie Which Should Not Be Named (bwaaahhaha).

So, name that pie

Food writers everywhere have struggled with what to call the pie – which is basically a pecan pie made with chocolate – since it was long called Derby Pie® before 1968, and someone decided to make money off it. Kentucky Horse Race Pie, Run for the Roses Pie, Thundering Hooves Pie, Old Kentucky Home Pie, Horse Apple Pie – we’ve heard them all. I’m up for new ideas here. Throw yours into the comments.

I’m going to call it:  May Pie – and cut to the chase.

Anyway: Here’s the recipe. Bourbon, if you use it, must come from Kentucky – that’s my rule. Nothing against Tennessee whiskey, mind you, but do honor that tradition for this pie.

May Pie 

(This is not Derby Pie® )

(For 2 pies)

  • 1 -1/2 cups sugar
  • 6 tablespoons flour
  • 6 eggs, beaten
  • 1 -1/2 cups butter, melted
  • 1/3 cup Bourbon, optional
  • 1 tablespoon vanilla extract
  • 1- 1/2 cups chocolate chips
  • 1- 1/2 cups pecans or walnuts, chopped
  • 2 unbaked 9-inch deep-dish pie shells

In a large mixing bowl, mix together sugar, flour, beaten eggs, butter, bourbon and vanilla. Beat well to combine and incorporate sugar.

By hand, stir in the chocolate chips and nuts. Divide mixture to pour into two unbaked pie shells. Place pies on cookie sheets to prevent spills and stabilize pies.

Bake at 350°F for 35 to 40 minutes – or until pie is set.

Pie slices best when cool, but tastes best warm. Pie freezes very well.

Makes 2 9-inch deep dish pies.

Tags: Baking: Cheap therapy · Today in the World of Food

6 responses so far ↓

  • 1 Leslie // May 2, 2010 at 9:16 am

    Help – I am hosting my Book Club Tuesday night and we are reviewing “The Help”. I want to make a caramel cake but am not coming up with great recipes for it….suggestions?
    many thanks!

  • 2 Merrie Lee Reese // May 2, 2010 at 2:38 pm

    Try http://www.cakecentral.com and ask. Lots of info and responses to questions.

  • 3 Jan Norris // May 2, 2010 at 4:16 pm

    I have sent you one privately that my boyfriend enjoys. Hope you like it.

  • 4 Annette Jones // May 4, 2010 at 11:06 am

    This recipe sounds so good! Good enough to risk me trying it and hoping I don’t go into a diabetic coma! Is it okay to use imitation Bourbon or does that just kill the taste? I was thinking about the kids but now I think… there are some things the kids just don’t need to share with mommy!

  • 5 Jan Norris // May 4, 2010 at 11:09 am

    IS there an imitation bourbon??!! Just stick in a tablespoon of vanilla and call it done. Bourbon not crucial – I know there are those who can’t have it. More for me….

  • 6 Tory // Aug 10, 2010 at 10:16 am

    Kentuckians loathe that company for taking over the name of a pie we’ve been making for many, many years. I use more pecans, like 2 to 2.5 cups.

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